It can be daunting when thinking about private medical treatment: the image of stuffy offices and eye-watering fees along Harley Street isn't an accurate one, but it's not too far from the truth either. So today, we'll explain how private treatment at our clinic works, what you can expect on your visit and how we can help you reach a higher level of care for yourself and your family foot care needs.
How people find us
Around two-thirds of our new clients are word-of-mouth referrals from patients who've recommended our clinic to friends or colleagues, so this blog is for those who've found us through Google or Bing, and more importantly have never used a private clinic before.
Choosing your appointment
Most people have a general idea of what kind of appointment they need to book, and we're on hand if you're unsure. As a rough guide:
Pain in heel, foot or soft tissue problem? Plantar Fasciitis Management
Discoloured, flaky or loose toenail? Fungal Nail Management
Pain when running, cycling or any sport activities? Sports Podiatry
Red bony bump/ pain below your big toe? Bunion
As is standard with medical practices such as GP's or dentists, an appointment is for one issue only. A specialist consultation for plantar fasciitis can't be used to get treatment for fungal nails on the side, so please be respectful of our time and of the others waiting after you by staying focused on the issue you've come to see us for.
Meet your Podiatrist
A degree-educated expert in the interaction of biomechanics, anatomy, physiology and pharmacology that we call Podiatry. From the moment you rise from your chair and walk to the consulting room, your Podiatrist is looking for clues; if your shoelaces are still tied (kick off and slip on your shoes? tsk tsk, bad for your feet), if you have difficulty rising or if your alignment favours one side or the other. All of this is useful data, gathered even before you've been settled into the chair.
The initial consultation
Your Podiatrist will introduce themselves, and discuss your medical history, along with what you hope to achieve that day. What will help you is being honest - our clinicians treat amateur and semi-pro climbers, runners and cyclists on a daily basis so we understand the requirements every physical activity takes on the body. If you've recently switched from trail to concrete tell us; if you overdid it in spin class you definitely need to tell us.
Your podiatrist will work with you to devise a treatment plan best suited to your needs, It's up to you to ensure the plan reflects your wishes as discussed. The best way to do this is to be forthcoming about your health and lifestyle - we can only base our plan upon the information you give us. If you're unsure, talk to your Podiatrist about the issue you have booked for.
Managing the problem
This is where most of the work is really done - dispelling any misconceptions that you may have had. The most common one is that there's a quick-fix or 'lifestyle' hack for getting rid of a particular problem. As with that one killer diet or exercise fad, it simply isn't true.
Be it fungal nails, plantar fasciitis or even corns, there's always an element of self-care that needs to come from you, the patient. Your underlying physical and mental health can greatly affect your healing, as well as your attitude to your own care. We can prescribe the best orthotics in the world (and often do) but if you're unwilling to take a break from running, or won't do the stretching exercises we suggest then you'll only be prolonging your discomfort.
So will I have to keep coming back?
Most problems can be managed within 1-5 visits, though not all require that many. Some individuals require ongoing foot-care, so be prepared for this if you're serious about your health and wellness. What you hope to achieve as a result of your visit depends on how much time and effort you want to invest in your health and how important your feet are to you. Buying the best cycle will only make you a fitter cyclist if you put in some hard work; seeing the best podiatrist will only be truly effective if you're willing to see it as a partnership.
This is one of the reasons we're so popular; we work with you throughout your journey. We often follow-up with WhatsApp to make sure that we're with you whether it's for a one-off such as removing a corn to keep in touch as you get used to your new orthotics.
We don't treat you for a second longer than you need. Every decision we make for your healthcare is:
Made in partnership with you
It's unethical - and flat-out wrong - to keep you coming back for unnecessary treatment. Our treatment plans are based on decades of clinical experience based on professional guidelines and we will always give you the information you need to make a informed decision about your care. But we can only do that if you tell us what we need to know.
I hope that's helped clarify a little about how private medical practices work. We're offering you the best consultation without the queues, and we try to demystify the process at every stage. From the get-go, you're making an informed decision every step of the way, with no surprise costs along the way.
A Day at the Races © MGM 1937